Why use speakon

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by et141311, May 19, 2007.

  1. et141311


    Oct 25, 2006
    Greenville, SC
    I have a combo and add on cab (500 Watts of power between the 210s and 115)...I was wondering what benefit is there from running a speakon cable to the cab from the head than a 1/4 speaker chord?

    Thank You
  2. Stu L.

    Stu L.

    Nov 27, 2001
    Corsicana, Texas
    Not to be a jerk, but a search would provide tons of answers. Some of which include the fact that they lock, and provide more current transfer over a 1/4". And that whole thing about not being able to short out when you disconnect them ;)
  3. 1/4" plugs were never designed for that purpose, Speakons are. Plus there's the possibility someone may hookup a guitar cable between amp and cab...
  4. Hi.

    Yep, 1/4" standard comes from telephone switchbanks back in time of the manually operated switching. They were designed only for low power static applications.

    IMHO speakons are the best that's available, why settle for anything inferior?

    The benefits outweigh the drawbacks (if any?) 10:1

    Just my 0.02€
  5. Akami

    Akami Four on the floor

    Mar 6, 2005
    The contacts are also self-cleaning.

    Whether you'll find a noticeable difference is only something you could answer, but it is a little telling that Walter Woods still (at least as far as I know) doesn't offer them, even on the all powerful Ultra.

    Personally, I like speakon connectors and feel that it's one thing I don't need to worry about when I have them in place of 1/4" plugs.
  6. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    Westchester, NY
    Why not use speakons?
  7. tolson36


    Oct 20, 2003
    If you don't have speakon jacks on your amp.

    If I did I would use them. Once the amp is out of warranty I'd be tempted to add the jacks myself.
  8. KingOfAmps

    KingOfAmps Inactive

    Don't overlook the fact that 1/4" sufficed for many, many decades in thousands and thousands of high-powered bass amps. Even today they continue to suffice instead of or next to Speakons.

    Speakons didn't even show up on bass amp radar in any meaningful way until about 10 years ago.

    As always when I chime in with this opinion I get pounced on by the Speakon brigade who think I'm trying to say 1/4 is better. I'm not. I'm just saying 1/4 has worked well for a long time and few amps that offer Speakon do so exclusively. There's a reason for that.
  9. tolson36


    Oct 20, 2003
    tend to agree

    one reason it would be extra nice for a tube amp is the safety factor. An open load is not good for a tube amp and speakons would help prevent one possible scenario whereby a 1/4 loose and gets knocked out or gets shorted etc.

    of course it doesn't do anything to remedy forgetting to plug it in

    I have a SS backup amp --with speakon outs, and a tube amp (main gigging amp) without. If both of my amps had 'em, I might spend a few dollars extra for a bit more protection. I wish my SS (power amp) had 1/4 too for the flexibility.
  10. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    Why use winter tires?

    Speakons where designed for the job. Quarter inch where not.
  11. turcmic


    Jul 30, 2006
    Montreal, QC
    I always used 1/4 until I bought a new amp with only speakon outputs. Never had a problem but I always used the proper gauge ie 12 or 14 speaker cable.
  12. Crabby


    Dec 22, 2004
    I finally upgraded my rig last year and had a custom wired speakon cable made with 10 guage wire. Its wired differently on one end to plug into the bridged mono output on my power amp and then into my new SVT810E.

    The cable has a printed shrinkwrapped label on one end that says "To Amp" so I dont mess up the connection. Very nice cable, was made custom by Rapco for me and only cost about 22 bucks Canadian. I was really impressed.

    Its nice to have good cables for peace of mind.
  13. chadds


    Mar 18, 2000
    Winter 1/4 inchers are not as good in the summer as summer Speakons. In fact Speakons work better in Speakon jacks then they do in 1/4 inch jacks even in the fall or spring.
  14. KingOfAmps

    KingOfAmps Inactive

    I bet members of the Speakon Brigade fly into a rage when they see someone plug a 1/4" into a Speakon.

  15. tolson36


    Oct 20, 2003
    they have XLRs with 1/4 holes in the middle

    I think I saw an amp the other day with 1/4 in the middle of a speakon--can someone confirm?
  16. KingOfAmps

    KingOfAmps Inactive

  17. lazyone2


    Jul 27, 2006
    new jersey shore
    My Euphonic Wizzy has a phone plug in the middle of the Speakon.
  18. Another safety advantage- if you're running a high wattage stereo in the bridged mono mode you can end up with some serious power on the metal cover on a 1/4" cable. It can really give you a bite if you're not careful. Not so with a Speakon cable. Although you could use shrink tube over the metal cover.
    Plus it locks, preventing some clown of a light guy from tripping over your cable and pulling it out of the cab.
  19. +1 to KingOfAmps last post.

    In fact IMHO Speakon® Combo is the part to use if You're making a mod to Your mono instrument amp. That way You have the both options should something go wrong during the gig.

    IMO Neutrik is THE company when it comes to innovative connectors that don't cost an arm and a leg. I prefer using their products over any other brand.

    Just my 0.02€

    Ps. Regarding the KingOfAmps post about the Speakon Brigade, You'll get good laughs when a close minded PA technician sees You doin' just that. Man they ARE CONFUSED :D :D :D :D
  20. greenboy


    Dec 18, 2000
    remote mountain cabin Montana
    greenboy designs: fEARful, bassic, dually, crazy88 etc
    Nobody in SR is mourning the 1/4 crap unless they have been living in a time warp.

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